tv The Kudlow Report CNBC January 21, 2014 7:00pm-8:01pm EST
what can i say? ibm was truly the first disappointing quarter of 2014. cash flow, revenue growth, no, missing. i would like to say there's always a bull market somewhere, i promise to try to find it just for you here a blockbuster report shows that well under half of the 2 million people who have enrolled on the obamacare exchanges were actually insured beforehand. in fact, the knew mckenzie report says only 11% are new. that means the entire point of obamacare, covering the uninsured, isn't even coming anywhere close to achieving that goal. but here's something that is succeeding in america, the private sector entrepreneurial oil and gas boom. last year u.s. energy growth was the fastest of any country in the last two decades. wow. all of a sudden republicans are looking at more and more states where they think they can win
the 2014 senate races. has obamacare put every democrat everywhere in danger? all those stories and much more coming up on "the kudlow report" beginning right now. good evening, everyone. i'm larry kudlow. this is "the kudlow report." we are live at 7:00 p.m. eastern and 4:00 p.m. pacific. let's get to the storm currently pounding the east coast. steve handelsman from nbc news is out in the snow for us tonight. it doesn't get any better than that. good evening, steve. >> reporter: hi, larry. good evening. i don't think the snow is the big story. here in washington it's snowy. it's snowy all up and down the east coast. there will be a big amount of accumulation. on the back side is the cold. here's some investment advice.
go long on parkas. buy down futures. it's freezing out here. here on capitol hill, the government workers were told, most of them anyway, stay home and try to work from home. that may be the case tomorrow. no decisions made. a lot of schools closed, mostly because of the snow, and also because of the cold. and tremendous transportation disruption all up and down the east coast. and then airports that serve all the big east coast airports, at least 3,000 flights canceled. and so, larry, they're worried here in washington because of the bitter cold. 10 to -- mine nus 10 to minus 15 forecast. pretty much the same through baltimore, philly, new york, up into maine. it's a real chiller. on top of that, all of the snow has disupt ared the state's capitol. >> steve handlesman, you've never looked better. many thanks to nbc's steve
handlesman. now bad news for obamacare tonight. even with a modest increase in overall enrollment in the obamacare exchanges, early estimates suggest that at least 2/3 of those people already had some form of health insurance before the law even went into effect. plus, the chances of getting 7 million uninsured people on the rolls in the next year and 20 million in the next three years to make it solvent look mighty slim. let me get this straight, president obama's signature achievement which was supposed to bring down health care costs and reduce the number of uninsured, americans aren't very effective at doing either right now. surprise, surprise, it's not working. here now we have two health policy experts, dan mendle son and paul howard is director of the manhattan institute's center for medical progress. gentlemen, thank you on a snowy and cold night. paul, let me go to you first.
what do you make of the lousy numbers reported over the weekend? i have another one for you, mckenzie has done a very substantial study and they say it may be as low as 11%, only 11% are newly insured people. >> right. you have obviously the bosh rollout of the healthcare.gov website, you have insurance priced above what they were last year. you have a lot of young and healthy people sitting on the sidelines not buying health insurance. only 24% of newly enrolled are in the 18 to 35 category. then you have some small employers dumping people into the exchanges. target announced that today. overall ee noerm mounormous chu. i think that has to worry the administration and insurers. >> dan mendleson, if i were the administration i would be worried for a lot of reasons. not just more broken prompts but this program gets more and more expensive, the costs go higher
and the premiums go higher as they continue to undershoot their targets. what's your view of this story? >> i think it's way too early to call this program dead. the fact is that the people enrolling in this program are the ones who need it. they're the ones who are chronically ill, they're the ones who were canceled by their insurance. it's the ones that are finding less expensive insurance in the exchanges. what you have in this program is a private market exchange that is making individual insurance available to every american for the first time in history. so it's not surprising that you see a lot of different kinds of people enrolling in this insurance. >> it wasn't dead. i am all for taking care of the elderly and the sick. i understand why they're enrolling. i get that. you know what, i'm all for that. i mean, i think the gop should come out because i think that's a key feature of this that a lot of people like, but, but, but, but, but the problem is the young aren't coming in and so the mix is so bad that you're going to go bankrupt sooner than
anyone thought. let me come back to this mckenzie study to get your take. very important. mckenzie study, only 11% newly insured. here's what they said, affordability is the biggest problem, i.e.,, premiums, right. 50% cited affordability and 30% cited technical challenges, meaning the website. the website may be improving over time, but affordability is going to get worse,, if you're right, and that elderly demographic is the key. >> larry, i think what's important here is that we give the private market an turch opportunity to work. on the affordability issue, i don't think you want us to be subsidizing people more. the fact of the matter is that the subsidies are pretty high already. so, look, it's early in this program still. there's another two months left before the deadline. the ones who have signed up really need it. they either had insurance before, they're used to the
market or they need it because they're sick. i think what's going to happen towards the end of the elrollment period is you will see the younger, healthier people enroll in this program. the other thing is, there's time. this is the first year. >> look, i've heard the promise and i haven't seen the results. you may be right, but so far you've got to say that you're not right. go ahead, paul, what are you going to say? >> the challenge here, dan made some good points, is the challenge for median health costs, $900 a year, looking at what they're spending on premiums and deduct iblts even for silver plans are 2,000, $2500. they're spending that money if they go uninsured. the penalty, 1% of income, very small. so they can easily do the math and say i'm going to be paying more in premiums and expected health costs even if i go uninsured. the subsidies are targeted at those sickest and oldest leaving out the most profitable enroll
lees sitting on the sidelines. >> in two ways ironically, the fact is that target and other employers putting people into these exchanges will help the risk pool. you know, long before obama was elected employers were spending less and less on employee health care and so it is -- it's understandable that you see people now coming into the exchange, some people are just, you know, voluntarily going in even if their employers are actually offering coverage. >> the trouble with that story though, to be honest with you paul -- or dan mendleson, as bob la chef ski has said, this was designed by academics and egg heads. they didn't go to the consumers to come up with numbers and provisions. you won't get these youngsters, i think, to spend $5,000 a year, okay, with whatever, a $3,000 deductib deductible. not happening that way. i want to go to another point because, dan, you raised this. i want you both to weigh n. paul
howard, the issue of subsidies. you really have two subsidies here. you have the initial subsidy on purchase and enrollment. you have a second subsidy which some people call a bailout and that's the so-called risk corridors or the so-called reinsurance. now that second subsidy becomes necessary because there is no actuarial market risk oriented allowances. all these mandates are coming in adding to the costs and be now the lousy demographics are going to make the costs more expensive, paul howard. there's a rebellion going on about the subsidies which some people regard as a bail out. what's your take on this rebellion? >> look, basically the insurers are being told you can't underwrite for risk. there will be community rating and guaranteed issue. there will be guaranteed subsidies. that's not a market that works. so, look, democrats had to put these risk corridors and
reinsurance in to make money on the table to get insurers to participate. look, they're not going to be made completely whole even at the top end of the risk corridors. they're only making 80 cents back on every dollar they lose. with profit margins 4% or less on the exchanges, that's not a great market to be in. i'd caution part d and medicare advantage have some risk adjustments. i think the problem is we've handcuffed the insurance industry and not let them manage risk appropriately around benefits and other design features. >> i think even more, dan mendleson, there's no market-based risk analysis here, that's what's driving the actuaries crazy. >> that's not -- >> in part d drug program they were basing the drugs off actual market prices and then the generic equivalent. so they had a sense of where the market was and where the initial costs were going to be for the first couple of years. in this case you have no market pricing of risk, therefore, the
actuaries can't do their job, therefore, the cost overruns may drive the subsidies, aka, the bailouts even higher. i'll give you the last word, dan mendleson. >> i'm going to disagree with you on that is i think what's happening is the insurance companies are taking a lot of risk. they're trying to estimate what the cost of the program is going to be based on what they know the underlying program is. these subsidies are to help the program get up and running. they are highly similar to the subsidies that were put in place in the republican medicare part d program. >> no, but that was -- >> it's really what's necessary to get the program up and running. >> it's becoming a talking point. i want to disagree. dr. scott talked about this. bob talked about this. that drug program was basically you could chart the market prices of the drugs and the generics, this program here, you
cannot chart the actual risk available because there's no market. the benefit mandates have created something that has nothing to do with the marketplace and that's why we can't --, no, that's why this is completely different and likely, likely to be vastly more expensive, dan mendleson, whether we call it a bailout or another subsidy. it will be vastly more expensive. >> if the insurance companies, if they couldn't have underwritten it, they would not have fielded product in these markets. they can underwrite it and that's what they're doing, and i think what's going to happen is this will stabilize. it might take a couple of years to stabilize, but it'll happen and at that time there will be a strong individual health care insurance option for every american in this country. >> all right. that's one point of view. appreciate it very much. dan mendleson, appreciate t. let's switch gears.
we did know oil surged more than even the most optimistic predictions. to get even better and create more high-paying jobs, we need free market deregulation for more refineries and we need free trade forex ports. later in the show, republicans are widening the playing field as they're looking to garon some places, long shots, just a few months ago. now it may be in play. can the gop pull it off? right now as always, don't forget, free market capitalism is the best path to prosperity. we have a gang buster discussion of energy coming up to show you how free markets will help to produce more energy. i'm kudlow. we'll be right back. please stay with us. passenger: road trip buddy. let's put some music on.
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good bullish indicator. u.s. crude oil production jumped 15% last year. that's the fastest growth of any oil country in the last two decades. natural gas production, also spiking. all of this in the private sector entrepreneurial boon that's shell fracking and horizontal drilling. you know what, really nobody saw it coming except a handful of visionaries like harold hamm in
north dakota. but to keep this boom going we're going to need some free market deregulation. cnbc contributor, addison armstrong. director of market research at tradition energy. good evening. let me begin with the success part of the story. by lots of calculations i've come up with 10% of u.s. economic growth in this modest recovery. 10% has come from the oil sector. they don't count natural gas. just oil alone. what's your take on that? what's sustainable? >> i think it absolutely is, larry. in the big picture there's four areas where the boom is really providing some great tail winds for the economy. first you have to look at what it's doing to manufacturing here in the u. sms., then jobs and consumer trade. >> let's go to trade.
the slump now, the almost collapse of oil imports because we just don't need it has reduced our trade deficit by nearly $100 billion a year. that's a huge amount. that's a huge amount. and consequently it's strengthening the dollar and improving the gdp growth rate. now here's my issue, one of two issues, the u.s. government from a long law from the 1970s prevents the export of energy, of oil. oil, not natural gas, but oil. i think that's got to be listed, otherwise we're going to blunt this oil revolution because we'll have more oil here than we know what to do with. >> well, the good thing is our exports of refined products, distill late fuel, gasoline, they're at a record high. that's really one of the main underpinnings to the whole trade story. you're right. we're going to come up and we've
heard talk of this, the production wall. we're producing so much oil, we're swimming on gasoline. we're short on distillates but we have a market for it. this might be the year for the breakdown of the ban on oil exports. there doesn't seem to be much appetite in congress to prevent such measure from being pushed through. after all, it was only instituted in an emergency situation when the oil embargoes started in the '70s. >> right. >> we're in a different place. there is no argument for keeping this oil here in the u.s. >> i think that's exactly right. i want to add this. most of the oil from shale is sweet and right. the old stuff is the heavier, darker stuff. here's the point i'm making. we don't have enough refining capacity for all this new shale
oil, we don't have it. so at least in the short term if we can't export it, they're not going to drill for it, they're not going to frac for it. that's why we need to open up the laws. we need to create new refineries to get this tremendous amount of white, sweet crude oil from the shale. there's a bagillion regulations for building a new refinery. >> the issue is the not in my backyard issue. nobody wants to have a refinery built. first of all, they're vastly expensive and take many, many years but you're right. we've been short finding capacity nor a long time and it's remarkable what this country's refiners have been able to do in terms of retooling and expanding facilities that we
have this big boom in exports now. again, goes back to the cost advantage that we have here in the u.s. refineries in europe are shutting down because they can't compete with the cost basis we have. the bent spread and the wti has really disadvantaged european refiners and put us in the cat bird's seat forex ports n-- fors europe. >> easy question to you. what's your outlook for the price of oil. it's about $95 in the open market now. what are you thinking, buddy? >> you know, our forecasts is coming out here at $95. we don't think there will be a big up side. we think the bias is to the down side. it will be off 5% year on year.
>> addison armstrong, thank you ever so much. now new jersey governor, chris christie, he took the oath of office for his second term today. we have a live report from nbc's jay gray on what christie had to say. you want to see some real growth for the economy, larry kolikoff makes his argument for abolishing the corporate income tax completely. now that is my kind of guy. that is more like it. stay with us for all of that and much more. abolish the corporate tax.
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chris christie inaugurated for his second term as governor while a snowstorm hits the state. jay gray live in trenton. good evening, jay. >> reporter: hey there, larry. the snow is blowing. the wind has picked up significantly. there has been a storm, political storms swirling around chris christie and his administration for several weeks. the inauguration was great. he made comments but did not at all talk about the controversy surrounding his administration. of course, we're talking about bridgegate, the so-called plan by senior staff members to close down lanes on the george washington bridge, the busiest bridge in the world to create traffic problems. that lasted for days. that was pay back for a political foe according to some. the latest allegations that the
lieutenant governor tied sandy relief funds to the back of a hoboken mayor. the lieutenant governor has adamantly denied that. as the inauguration was going on state lawmakers have formed a super committee, they're calling it, to continue the investigation into an abuse of power by the administration. it does have subpoena power. they believe that investigation will take several months. that's something that governor christie does not want to hear as he tries to wrap up a second term and potentially make a run for the white house. he did have some fundraising opportunities this weekend as the leader of the republican governor's association, one here in the area, another on sunday. both well attended, we're sold. to this point it hasn't hurt that function of his job. again, it's something he doesn't want to linger, larry. >> stay with us for one second. this whole business, besides bridgegate, now they're doing
hobokengate. the mayor of hoboken has come out. we didn't hear from her for a year but now she's coming out. the guy from the administration in trenton who disbursed the sandy relief funds published a list of all the towns and cities and what they got and hoboken got at least its fair share if not more. so here she is squawking on msnbc that there is no proof or evidence that any of this went on and that there was an office building involved and whatever. somebody at some point has to have a fact here. >> reporter: larry, we should also point out that one of the things she's been complaining about is that she wanted protection from future flooding but water teams, 1/3 of the state's resources to fund that effort. obviously hoboken won't get 1/3 of the resources when so many communities need them. that's interesting to see how that will come out. one other thing, carl lewis, the
olympic sprinter, said he was forced out of the civic race in this state by governor christie. the governor's office said that was sour grapes and that had already been decided in the court of law. >> on that one, i'd say, kind of, so what? what does it have to do with anything? i know you've been reporting it. when i read that i thought, that's called politics. anyway, jay gray, it's cold. go inside. please get warm. thank you ever so much for your report. >> thank you. now folks, the republican party is starting to feel a lot more confident about winning those races this november. we'll take a look at an expand the list including michigan and virginia. that's next up on "the kudlow report." [ coughs, sneezes ]
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governor of california. he's never been elected for any political office. he will run as a republican which may be a difficult proposition in california. he announced his platform to create jobs and to improve public schools. >> he has to do a better job than arnold schwarzenegger. i like that. neil's a good guy. we'll get him on the show. morgan, thank you very much. we appreciate it. now, republicans just need a net gain of six seats to take back the senate. democrats are defending 21 seats. republicans are gunning for incumbent. in conservative states like arkansas, alaska, north carolina, west virginia and louisiana. they may also be broadening the playing field making a play for seats like michigan, virginia. can 2014 be the year of the gop? by the way, i'm interested. what will their message be,
obama care, yeah, dot, dot, dot, dot, but what else will they say? here now we have democratic strategists chris karthenis and noel mcport. noel, first off, i can count. i guess i can count five maybe, arkansas, louisiana, north carolina, alaska. i can count five. maybe there's a 50-50 tie. what am i missing here? >> a state that we originally had off the table is back in play and that's virginia, and that's because of ed gillespie, a guy that can stand on his own, a guy that has a great reputation. also, look at michigan. look at what terry ann land has raised. she's raised almost $4 million 3rks$.7 million. governor snyder has a slight
lead as well. this is like in arkansas, we have tom cotton running against prior and asa hutch chin son. michigan that was originally off the table and virginia, these are back on. republicans are starting to play and blue states. >> chris, are you shaking in your boots? are your knees knocking? you heard what noel had to say. >> no, not yet. is that a conclusion? i think there's two dynamics to keep in mind. one is history. you had a six-year itch for every president, they tend to lose seats in the senate and the house. you have the ten most competitive seats, eight held by democrats.
a different turnout model. older. the weakest of the republican party, they put up candidates that not only end up losing races they should have won but end up hurting the party across multiple races. we saw that in missouri where you had akin say disturbing remarks on rape and that affected the impact of the indiana race. republicans probably should have won four, five at least senate seats. i don't think anyone can have a good grasp of what will happen until they get settled. if anybody thinks they're better than warner, good luck. popular governor. middle of the road democrat. that will be an uphill battle. >> i know what noel is going to say.
i'm a personal admirer of senator mark warner, but the reality is he voted for obama care. he was enthusiastic for obama care and he echoed the president's lie that if you liked your insurance and your doctor, you can keep it. in fact, so many of these senate races may hinge on the democratic incumbent echoing president obama's lie, chris. that's the ultimate liability here. i know warner is a smart guy, but now that game has turned. ed gillespie, there is no one smarter than my pal gillespie. what's your take on the big lie? >> i know republicans will exploit this for all it's worth. the reality is very few elections where one issue basically defines the election even in senate races. you have to have a vision in terms of where you're going to lead the state, the country. if all you do is basically bang the drum of obama care, that's
fine. the response is what's the alternative? if you look at the polling, they're not in favor of repeal. the argument is we don't like obama care. the question is, what do you propose? we don't have any answers. that is not a recipe for political advantage. >> noel, let me ask you a question. you're involved in the cotton race. i think you'll win handsomely, mostly because of your managerial skills. chris, i have to ask you a question. obamacare may or may not be enough. it may not be enough. the lies may or may not be enough. besides that, noel, what will the gop message be? they should have wanted to win the senate in 2010 and they didn't and what's the deal this year? what do you think they'll say? >> everybody keeps discounting
the obama care. that's going to get worse as we a preesh, you know, into 2014. so one of the silver bullets we do have and it's not just pass say, is obama care. we can go into the economy, housing, a lot of different avenues where the democrats have had failed policies. i think a lot much people are dissatisfied. look, i noah lone 61% of people with a quinnipiac poll were upset of president obama's job. you have to look at how far has he had seeing them? >> just by shoel them and then his administration is enough. obama care is just now rolling out. it doesn't even have enough people signing up. what they do have, it's bad.
i worked for boseman. he defeated his opponent. >> i would suggest one thing. i hate to give advice to noel because of her management of political campaigns. i would suggest this about an economic growth methods. there are 92 million people who have left the work force. only 58% of americans are actually employed today and even though something called gdp may be improving, the latest situation is not good and republicans need a growth method. chris, noel, thank you. as always. now forget all of the subsidies and what you've come up with.
if you want to see a real job and poverty reduction, why not try a real economic growth plan. >> growth economies barry kotlikoff says, get this, eliminate the corporate income tax. i can't believe it. eliminate the whole thing. he'll explain it next up on "the kudlow report." where every great idea begins.
. serious job creation and economic growth, abolish the corporate income tax completely. altogether. drive a spike through its heart. that thought, one of which i completely agree, has been put for the by our next guest, lawrence kotlikoff. wonderful to see you. i keep telling -- since i read your thing i keep showing it to everybody. i say, look, larry kotlikoff is not kudlow. he's a good solid economist. now what caught my eye, as well as others, is you were saying get rid of the corporate tax. it would be the work force and wages that would benefit the most. tell us about that.
>> it's pretty straightforward, larry. it's something most economists would agree with. if you put high taxes on corporations, we have a pretty high effective tax rate here in the u.s. compared to other countries. it won't hurt the rich because they can take their capital and put it in a different country and that drives production and jobs outside of the u.s. and it also depresses wages. if we were to eliminate the corporate tax and we can do that by imputing the corporate profits to individuals at the personal level so there was no reason for companies not to locate in the u.s., we get a lot of capital coming back to the u.s., a lot of capital in the u.s., job creation, this is the result of a long-term study that he have a done with other economists looking at a model that doesn't have any kind of extreme supply side behavior or
extreme inside behavior, just bread and butter economies. >> there's a couple of points you made. number one, the corporate tax, a lot of people argued corporations, you know, collect taxes but they don't pay them. it's a pass through. they pass corporate taxes through in the form of lower wages or higher consumer prices or i guess ultimately less hiring because they can go overseas. is that fair, it passes through. is that fair? >> well, that's what the model shows. it's a model that a lot of countries is a big country and it's small in terms of the economy, china, indiana, europe, japan, you see that the gdp rate has been around 35%. other countries are cut from 25.
we have a lot of capital coming in. that's true even if other countries match because we're starting out higher because even if they all come down to zero, we're still ahead in terms of more capital and production in the. s. >> what kind of wage increases, what kind of job growth would you expect to see if this plan went home. we didn't try to move the hikeup for the low and high skilled workers. it's something that can benefit all workers. if you look at what happened in iowa when they had a 50% corporate tax rate in the '80ed, then they dropped it down to 12.5%, enormous increase in outside growth and investment. 1,000 u.s. countries headed over to do the bias? they documented it.
a lot of people think this is going to cut the tax. it will be a stop to the rich. i think it will be a stop to the workers. >> that's really -- to me, that's really the key insight that you've made. >> yes. >> and along 9 way you've abolished and there's nothing has run for him. it won't be worried about that. only with corruption. we ha that's another part i love about this. clean house altogether. >> i think it's something democrats and republicans can invite on. this was greeg for them. by the way, i'm proposing that the profit for the corporations, otherwise you'll pay taxes being brought to the shareholders so that we would have to pay a tax at the personal level. the proprietorship, you have to
pay taxes on your income that you earned in your business. same thing as a corporation. pastor. >> no, i like that. to some effect you'd be helping though. i thought that would be anything. we're not making any money off it anyway. >> it's producing 1 point be point 8% ref knew in gdp. it's a heavy tax to monitoring, a tact. kind of at the end of the road and driving out unfortunately how the craft makes it okay. i'm going to help you on this one. >> great big news in the investment world. we have a band and stock firm.
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the bond fund did perform poorly last year. we a everybody proo yat it. a mixed day on wall street. dow drops, nasdaq pops a little bit. the s&p up a smidge. >> the broad index is flat. earnings news remained mixed. i.b.m. out with earnings. they beat the streak. the stock trading lower in after hours. and let me add this. the fed is going to continue to taper its bond purchases as ben bernanke may be heading towards the brookings institution. kind of sorry to hear that. this will be his last meeting and janet yellen, the empress will take over but with her new deputy, the rather hawkish stanley fisher. i want to know what all of this
stuff means. we have larry grazer, managing partner. what's up with elerian and the p pimco story? >> perhaps his story is king of all bond funds companies and in the event they leave their product. >> interesting the key times he did it here in boston, impeccably pry the when the market peaked. so perhaps we're at the tail end of a 30 year bond and it was a good time to get out. >> they manage a lot of stuff, too. how do they do in their stock market? they manage equities. how did they do there? >> not good. they failed to diversify. there's exwitt at this which will be the failure. >> ed, i want to move on. we'll learn more about that.
i want to ask you a question. everybody knows the fed is going to taper down. they'll slow down their bond purchases. >> sure. >> maybe it will be faster, maybe it will be slower. looks like it will be faster. my question to you is is this perhaps maybe on the stock market here, the dawning knowledge of clarettive, the moment of clarity, that the if he had which backed us up in markets this year, i'm not taking down profits, i'm saying the fed will be gone as a back strop. is that starting to weigh, annoy, make investors nervous, etc., etc.? i don't think at all, larry, what's yuch setting people and removing them are the global macro conditions. you have an individual investor, do you see an earnings revij with a knee bow underside.
slowing down the presenting is an irrelevant thing, has no impact on the market. you look at anybody writing reports from morgan stanley, goldman sachs, i read them all 9 the time. it's an irrelevant point thatter one says we need to stop talkings about it and focus on earnings. >> larry gra zp er, it's funny. i believe profits are always the mother's milk of stocks. i think the last year you really helped the stock market more than earnings. i just wonder whether because everyone holds ed butowsski's attack. >> get rid of the bond buying and maybe the overnight fed's funds rate will start moving higher and higher.
if that pops -- >> yeah, larry,. it increases the level of volatility in the market. that's not a bad thing in the market. today we saw 3 1/2 ends. also gets moving in the background if it leads to more capital investments. this is for the stock market. brace yourself. i basically agree profits are my port ner. in the last ten seconds. if clemly has 10 or 12 things, where do you come out on evaluations? right now stocks are 13 to 15 prgs percent based on other
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